Efficient separation of macroconstituents from biomass by combining unit operations based on insights in the structural organzation

01 November 2019 → 31 January 2024
Regional and community funding: IWT/VLAIO
Research disciplines
  • Agricultural and food sciences
    • Food fermentation
    • Food technology
by-products biomass unit operations stabilisation extraction
Project description

In the frame of circular economy and biobased thinking, an increased attention is going to valorization of food waste, preferably producing new products/derivatives of the food waste with an added value as high as possible in the valorization chain. On the other hand, to be able to fulfill current needs and trends towards the use of alternative and new biomass and their ingredients in the food, attention is going to producing food ingredients from these biomasses. Although many studies available, at the moment no red line is found between the extraction yield obtained of different constituents present in the biomass, and the used extraction technology, either or not combined with a cell wall disruption technology. The major reason for this gap, is the trial and error approach used to extract a range of macro- and/or microconstituents from food waste and new biomasses. Although this gap, one general conclusion that can be made is the variable results obtained, due to large differences in the structural organization of the biomass, as well as the insufficient capacity of the use of one technology to extract constituents. Indeed mechanistic insight of the effect that different disruption and extraction technologies have on the cell wall disruption, and on the changes in the structural organization is lacking. Besides some indications are available that a combination of several disruption and extraction technologies, either applied sequentially or simultaneously, will result in a synergistically effect on disrupting the biomass cell wall, increasing the extraction yields as a final result.

Based on the previous observations obtained by the project partners, as well as based on literature, we

decided to took this research gap as the main starting point for this project proposal. Indeed the major

objective of this proposal is to obtain a clear mechanistic insight on the impact of unit operations, used for the stabilization, disruption and extraction of constituents of the biomass, on cell wall disruption and cellular organization of the biomass. Obtaining this insight will allow us to start building a decision tree, which is the final end-point of the project.